With Recent Loss, Mexico Faces Potential World Cup Elimination
Mexico is in the World Cup quarterfinals for the second time in five tries, and the team faces elimination today in France.
But for this coach who is also a man whose job security is in question, this has been the toughest season any one of them have ever faced.
“These are not normal times. We’ve never played worse,” Luis Manuel said after the team’s 2-1 quarterfinal win over Colombia on Sunday. It was the team’s best game of the tournament so far.
The win puts Mexico, which made it to the round of 16 on the tournament’s opening day, into the quarterfinals for the second time in five tries. The team hasn’t won a game since 2012, when it won the tournament with a 2-1 win in the quarterfinals over France.
With coach Gerardo “Tata” Martinez having recently announced he was leaving, Mexico is also facing an uncertain future.
On Monday, the Mexican federation said Martinez had tendered his resignation at the end of the tournament. It said that to his credit, he had told the federation he was leaving, but wanted to leave as a team, and not by himself.
The Mexican federation also said it would not accept any compensation from any player or team that would be named for him. On Tuesday morning, it announced Martinez was fired at the end of the tournament.
“The federation has accepted that he made a mistake and accepted his resignation. He is no longer in our team. He has done wrong to the federation,” coach Alejandro “Tata” Corona said on the team’s website.
For this coach, who is also a man whose job security is in question, this has been the toughest season any one of them have ever faced.
He’s been on the job since 2005 and has been a key figure in Mexico’s winning teams since 2004. His teams have been competitive at major tournaments, while his teams have been competitive on the global stage. (On Monday, Mexico was ranked No. 12 in the world by FIFA. On Friday, the team was ranked No. 14.)
“We were winning almost every game we had. The team needed me,” he said. “It was very important